Here, thankfully, the Mondeo confounds your expectations of a car hailing from across the Atlantic. The sophistication evident in its powertrain and suspension feels truly European – and dominantly so.
The outright speed of a 148bhp, 1600kg car is never likely to attract attention, and less likely still when that car is so long-geared. Pulling 38mph per 1000rpm in top, the Mondeo is nine percent leggier than a Mazda 6 2.2d Sport and five percent taller geared even than a BMW 320d – both of which have more power and torque.
Our test car wasn’t even the Econetic economy version, which is longer-legged still. That Ford’s new all-aluminium 2.0-litre turbodiesel gives the Mondeo decent flexibility and pace shows how responsive the engine is.
It takes a little while to get going at the bottom of the rev range, with peak torque not arriving until 2000rpm, and 30-70mph in fourth takes longer than it perhaps should.
From 2000rpm upwards, the engine revs smoothly and freely to 4000rpm, before tailing off thereafter more than a BMW diesel would – but not enough to offend. Pedal response is excellent and pulling power always feels stout enough above that 2000rpm threshold for fuss-free acceleration and easy overtaking.